Thailand and the European Union (EU) have agreed to resume the talks over a free trade agreement after the negotiations were halted by a military coup in Thailand in 2014.
Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit said after a meeting with the EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis at Le Berlaymont in Brussels of Belgium on Wednesday that the two sides aim to re-launch talks within the first quarter of this year.
Negotiations for an EU-Thailand Free Trade Agreement were formally launched on 6 June 2013. These negotiations were put on hold by the EU following the 2014 coup.
Following the General Election in Thailand in 2019, the EU indicated openness to resuming negotiations, subject to certain conditions being met.
This was considered the first time that both sides expressed jointly intention to re-launch the negotiations. Thailand will ask the cabinet to approve the arrangements for the EU-Thailand Free Trade Agreement as soon as possible.
The EU has already concluded FTAs with Singapore and Vietnam, and some other ASEAN member states including Indonesia are in the process of negotiation. Broadening EU’s engagement with Thailand through re-opening FTA negotiations should unlock the great benefits in trade and investment between the two parties. (TNA)